It is actually hard to write about what has happened among our readers and the collecting community in general over the last few weeks without getting a little choked up. I am personally in awe at the outreach and generosity of collectors all over the world.
So instead of trying to write eloquently about all the happenings, we will let these updates speak for themselves:
We could have never predicted what has happened. After my friend Chad told me about his son Ethan's dreadful health ordeal, and his attachment to his Hot Wheels at the hospital, it seemed like a great thing to write about. The word got out, and soon a local TV station picked up the story about Ethan and the generous collectors sending him cars from all over the world. After that, the story was picked up by ABC News, CNN, The Huffington Post, and People, among many other news outlets.
Well, here is a little update on what has happened since. Ethan is home and thankfully recovering, and he has, let's say, a few more toy cars to play with. Here is HALF of what was sent to the hospital for Ethan in the last few days:
HALF!! Chad and Michele have to return to the hospital today to pick up the other half, after they had no more room in their car the first time around. All last evening the family opened the packages and read the very touching notes from all over the US and the world. And this is after several packages had already arrived, including a massive package from Mattel (and wait until you see what is happening next). I think we are all left speechless at the outpouring of love for little Ethan.
We were asked to pass this note along from the Carneseccas:
Dear Hot Wheels Friends,
We are truly overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and cars Ethan has received. Ethan squeals with excitement as he opens up each package. He looks at every car and we read him every note. Through this experience we have realized that although there are negative things in the world, there is still SO much more good than bad. I am amazed that individuals read this story and took the time to bring joy into the heart of a little boy. We have invited friends and family over as we open the packages and read the notes so they can experience this goodness with us. There is usually not a dry eye in the room as we read tender stories of Hot Wheels memories. When I asked my 15 year old son what he has learned through this experience he said, “Service really does matter.” Thank you for your examples of kindness and compassion. We have been asked by many people exactly what illness Ethan had. It started as Pneumonia, then Empyema (fluid surrounding the lungs), it progressed to a collapsed and necrosed lung and finally broncho pulmonary effusion. Although Ethan is at home, he is still on the mend as his lung tries to heal. These cars have brightened his spirit and brought the sparkle back into his eyes. In one package we received, their family noticed that we even have the word “CAR” in our last name. :) We simply can’t thank you enough for what you have done. All we can do is pay it forward.With all our love and gratitude,The “CAR”nesecca Family
The Lamley Raffle:
Last month we conducted a raffle to help our friend Doug at T-Hunted raise funds for a new computer. Doug uses a MacBook to run his popular blog, and unfortunately it was stolen out of his car at gunpoint while he was waiting at a stoplight. MacBook's are incredibly expensive in Brazil, so we asked the collecting to community to help. We found a nice refurbished computer to purchase, and asked for donations by way of a raffle.
Soon after we announced it, fellow collector Peter from Canada asked to help, and generously told us about a collector in Sacramento whose wife was suffering from multiple sclerosis and was trying to raise funds for the local MS Walk. Peter's suggestion was to donate any extra funds raised to their cause. We thought that was a great idea.
That collector is Jeremy Bryson, and his inspiring wife is Amanda. I have gotten to know Jeremy in the process and am truly inspired with what is a total family effort to help their very determined mother. What a cool family.
The result of the raffle? We were able to raise enough funds to get Doug his computer (and get it delivered to him in Brazil as well), and then essentially MATCH the same amount in the form of a donation to the MS Walk of Sacramento. We doubled our goal!
Here is the MS Walk covered by the local Sacramento news station, where Amanda is featured prominently: